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New report predicts smaller tablets will lose ground to large smartphones

A new report from NPD DisplaySearch predicts that shipments of tablets that are between 7 to 7.9 inches in size will begin to lose market share compared to larger tablet products, thanks in part to competition from larger smartphones.

The report notes that in 2013, shipments of smaller tablets took up 58 percent of the total market. However, that percentage is expected to go down, with NPD predicting that hardware companies will put more of their tablet focus on products that are between 8 and 10.9 inches. NPD believes that shipments of the larger tablets will overtake the smaller ones in terms of market share by 2018.

Samsung recently noted in its latest quarterly financial report that "higher shipments of 5-to-6 inch large screen smartphones replaced demands for 7-to-8 inch tablets." A few weeks ago, it announced a partnership with Barnes and Noble to launch a Nook-branded version of the seven-inch Galaxy Tab 4.

NPD's report adds that tablets that are 11 inches or more, are expected to take up 10 percent of the total tablet market by 2018. Hisakazu Torii, vice president of smart application research at NPD DisplaySearch, stated, "The increase in screen sizes will help increase tablet PC revenues."

NPD has lowered its 2014 tablet shipment forecast to 285 million units worldwide, with the firm blaming the delayed launches of new products as part of the reason for their adjustments.

Source: NPD DisplaySearch

  • I don't need a machine to tell me that.
  • Yeah I've grown weary of my Nexus 7. Excess metal now. Posted via Android Central App
  • I'm getting there my S5 is stealing it's thunder Posted from my Nexus 7 2013 running Android L or Samsung galaxy S5
  • And in other news...the sky is blue and the Pope is Catholic.
  • Guess what? Water. It's wet Posted via Android Central App
  • Actually, the sky is not blue. AFAIK, color is a specific visual spectrum thats reflected from a surface or matter. The sky appears blue because it cannot absorb the blue spectrum and so reflects it.
    Following that fact, nothing we see as color is that specific color.
  • Being right isn't the same as being relevant.....Sorry.....Couldn't resist.
  • This article is spot on. After owning my Note 3- my Nexus 7 just wasn't cutting it anymore and I had to get a Nexus 10. I use it way more than I ever used the Nexus 7. It's made me into a media consuming hound. I use it more than my Note when it comes to any media/games.
    Posted via Ash William's Boomstick
  • This is amazing information n5
  • Comment of the day. I am Aquaman!
  • Makes sense
  • Me 2 years ago: 5 inch screen? You look ridiculous making a call. I would never want to look that stupid. Stupid Person. Me last month: Is that the Note 3? Man, that's not that much bigger than my phone. I'll probably get one of those next time.
  • Yeah, I think we've all kind of progressed like that. I capped at 5", though. I have a Nexus 5, and I'm not getting anything bigger than this, even if it's just a little bigger. If the next Moto flagship retains the X's 4.7" screen, I'll get that, definitely.
  • It's most likely gonna have a 5.2 inch screen Posted via my M9, XT912, N910, G906, D6653, D870, G4, or G Pro 3
  • My Nexus5 looks so tiny tiny it's incredible... The M8 is much bigger (in physical size), so my next smarthpone will def. need >= 5.5 inches,
  • I'm good with anything less than 5.5 Posted from my Nexus 7 2013 running Android L or Samsung galaxy S5
  • Actually, using a note still does make one look like a tool. I like the functionality of them, but they are as big as an old Zack Morris phone. Posted via Android Central App
  • Ummm last time i checked, Zack Morris was awesome. I'm just hoping that, when I'm out making calls in public on my Note, that'll help land me Kelly Kapowski too... If/when that happens, I'll be sure to return to this thread and brag about how YOU'RE the one that's a tool.
  • I would think the other point of pressure is from 8+inch tablets that now have much slimmer bezels to the point that they take up similar space as an older 7". Thus the 8" tablet has become the "Comfortable to hold in one hand" size.
  • Yes! I love my Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4. The aspect ratio and bezels make it slimmer than even the iPad mini, but video on it is about the size of video displayed on the iPad Air. It's JUST small enough to fit into my cargo shorts, so it's really the perfect-sized tablet, IMO.
  • And the winner of the bloody obvious competition is... Posted via Android Central App
  • We really needed a firm to do a report on this? Posted via Android Central App
  • Yesterday I read an article on an Android site telling me that LARGE (~10") tablets were "doomed."
  • I saw that same article, then a day later, this article happens. So I guess there will be no tablets at all soon.
  • No, larger smart phones don't have a place. Even 5 inch is too large, let alone going above that with 6s and close to 7s. Anything near 7 is only a tablet range.
  • Preach! Posted via Android Central App
  • I think sales will answer that question. Posted via Android Central App
  • Sales answer that question because there is literally nothing else to buy Posted via Android Central App
  • Correct!
  • the choir. The market says 5+ inches isn't too big. I think we've been over this before.
  • Larger smartphones don't have a place? That is the dumbest comment I've read. Look how much is selling. More people want larger phones. My theory is that you need to wake up and smell the coffee.
  • For you n5
  • One of the big tech trends of the last 15 years or so is that cell phones have been adding the abilities of, and replacing the market share of a bunch of other hand held gadgets - see mp3 players, GPS units, portable movie players, PDAs, watches, handheld game consoles, calculators, and so forth. And of course the only difference between a small tablet and a large smartphone is the cellular radios, and the software that goes with that. Posted via Android Central App
  • It makes sense that tablets 7 to 7.9 inches in size will begin to lose market share. After all, what does the 5" Nexus 5 have over a Nexus 7? The internet or built in data plan. If there is a new 6" inches (or more) smartphone, there really would be no use for a device with 1-2 inches more real estate. Right now, I can fit a 7 inch tablet into my pants pocket. I wouldn't be surprised if 7 inches is the limit to wear smart phones will go. It will all depend on size, weight, and practicality.
  • I agree and kind of always have. In a way I was ahead of the curve.
    I never liked the 7-8 inch tablets, too small.
    Give me a moderately big smartphone to carry around. I'm at 5 now and I'd like to move up to something like the 5.5 LG G3
    which I carry around everywhere
    and a 10 inch tablet for a more computer like browsing experience around the house or while traveling.
    a tablet has never been something I wanted to carry around every day. I guess that's why 7 - 8 inch tablets never appealed to me.
  • I can see that. the note series imo are the best smartphones available not just the screen size either. I recently tried a samsung galaxy s5 and it was so laggy i couldnt stand it, my note 3 was 5 times faster and way more smooth and love the big screen. even the s5 seems small
  • I am afraid that I don't see how the Note can be the best smartphone even if I had both Note I and Note II. The problem with the series is a combination of bloatware, root restrictions and applications that suffer from problems with 240 DPI (the best way to utilize a big screen), proprietary stylus (I love stylus control but want it to be general across devices rather than demanding proprietary frameworks etc), carrier branding/bloatware (hard to buy a completely unlocked, unbranded Note 3 in the US unless imported), SIM region locks and so forth. It is telling that there are list of up to 50 apps that can be frozen right away on the Note 3 in order to enhance the performance. A Note 4 GPe, unlocked, unbranded (or a Note 4 Android Silver) could be a really great smartphone. It would be nice if such a thing would be released.
  • Hey, cmon guys, at least Apple is still sticking to their guns...
    - sorry, couldn't resist. Posted from my caseless GS5, because I believe in myself
  • Not for much longer. All the talk suggest a 4.7" iPhone 6 n5
  • And a 5.5" version as well.
  • I know I was being sarcastic lol Posted from my caseless GS5, because I believe in myself
  • I resemble that remark... I rarely use my tablet since I got my Note 3, but my wife has an S4 and consistently uses her Galaxy tab pro 12.2
  • Well to be fair the 12.2 is huge and not a 7-8 inch tab... Posted via my M9, XT912, N910, G906, D6653, D870, G4, or G Pro 3
  • I know it was an auto correct error but your comment conjured up some strange imagery! n5
  • Wow that's pretty insightful, considering Samsung said exactly that after their quarterly profits fell which was released a few days ago.
  • I don't have a huge phone but I've already moved up from a 7 inch tablet. I thought it was the perfect size when I got it until I used my LG G Pad 8.3. The smaller tablets are too similar to phones. I also owned a 10 inch tablet and that was too big. It wasn't comfortable to hold with one hand and I found an ultrabook made more sense when you go that big.
  • I'll be the contrarian. I don't agree. I bought my son a Nexus 7 for his 5th birthday. I paid around $200. I'm not going to buy him a $600+ large smartphone instead. It is true that as phone sizes creep up people buying those phones won't see as much of a need for a slightly-larger tablet. However, tablets will still have their uses, for example the pre-tween crowd.
  • Yep. I bought a Moto X for my phone, and I carry a Nexus 7 and a very small Bluetooth keyboard. The keyboard allows me to do actual work with the Nexus 7. I would not feel comfortable working on a smaller screen than this. And all together, the total cost is around the same as what you would pay for one of those flagship phones. The only thing is that I have a tablet that I feel comfortable working with, whereas the phone would still be too small.
    Posted via Android Central App
  • I have a nexus 4, a nexus 7, and an HP chromebook 11. Guess which one gets used the least... I am hoping the nexus 6 will have a 5+ in screen so I can ditch my nexus 7 and go back to 2 devices. Posted via Android Central App
  • Yeah, for me personally, a device like the G3 but with a 6-6.5" screen would be absolutely frickin' amazing. Add to that a Galaxy Tab Pro 12" for when you're at home, and you're done
  • Yea, half foot will be the norm for phones real soon. 'bout time! Posted via Nexus 5 with SwiftKey
  • I love my lg gpad 8.3 and g flex. I think 7inch tablets are dying off with 5-6inch smart phones replacing them. Posted via Android Central App
  • I look forward to see those predictions come true - namely when there are decent 6.5-7 inch smartphones in the market that can replace the Z Ultra. I have concluded that 6.5-7 inch is what I want in my next device (6.44 inch now). I have already done the pocketability test with a Nexus 7 and that is the maximum size for me. Until a 6.5-7 inch smartphone or should we call it "phablet" is available, I have to stick to my trusty C6802 that soon celebrates one year in my collection - sadly without any replacements in sight just yet. In order to fully replace it and assist in this "smartphones replace smaller tablets" vision, a 6.5-7 inch "phablet" with either Google vanilla Android L or "CM12" (CM L) or other vanilla-based Android implementations together with really powerful hardware (Snapdragon 810/815 and 3-4 GB RAM, 64 GB internal storage + microSDXC slot) and general stylus support (not proprietary like the S-Pen) would be needed. A keyboard case would be great as well. Carrier branding, locked bootloaders (if no unlock method is provided) and root restrictions are complete deal breakers. When there are decent devices in this size category in the market, then the 7 inch tablet will be replaced. I think 6.5-7 inch is the sweetspot between pockets and more stationary user scenarios. I don't see why the 7 inch segment itself is threatened - it will be healthy when there are great "phablets" available from different makers. It is convenient to go all-in-one.;)
  • I got an iPad mini back in 2012 when I was still using a BlackBerry and I used my iPad everyday for everything! Now, not so much I currently have a HTC One M8 and this thing has taken over! It's the first thing I pick up in the morning and the last thing I put down a night. (That used to be my iPad).The screen is great "5 inch", I thought size would be too big but I adjusted! So with all that said I still have my iPad mini and I use for certain things but I can say I won't buy a new iPad or tablet in the future, especially now since I have this awesome device! I agree that bigger smartphones are gonna take a lot of sales away from tablet sales... Posted via Android Central App
  • Totally disagree. I can't even tell you how many people I have heard say that they stayed away from the S5 because it is so ridiculously big, not to mention the Note.
  • What i like about a 7" is it easily fits in my purse. I usually still carry my n7 along with my n5. I don't think I would carry an N10 around. I must say my son just got ASUS Transformerbook T100 (10 inch tablet/computer with removable keyboard running windows) that I'm using now and it is sweet.
  • Yes. A 7" is still easy to carry, and light. And that allows me to use my phone more as a phone. Posted via Android Central App
  • Myself and wife have 5" smartphone as well as 8" Tabs. We need both. 7" tabs are too small, 10" tabs are too big. The 8" will still fit into trouser and jacket pockets. Still light and portable.. Posted via Android Central App
  • This has nothing to do with larger phones, but sure has a lot to do with small tablets. I had an Asus Transformer before getting my Tegra Note 7. I loved the Transformer; not so much the Tegra Note 7, BUT only because of the small screen. The Note 7 is very fast, and after months of use (got it when released) I have no complaints about it's performance. I just can't get used to that smaller screen. I get by, but I'm saving my pennies for a 12" tablet. I'm a heavy tablet user, which might make a difference. I do everything on my tablet but text and phone calls, and only use my phone for phone calls and texts..
  • Duh!!! What genius decides to publish these "articles"?